Engaging with our next provincial government: planning and positioning

Just like many of you, we at The Federation office have been watching closely the results of the BC election and the media coverage of the unexpected, unprecedented results. The legislature is now poised to tussle over who should (or could) be appointed Speaker—a choice that will give us a better idea of how the next few months will unfold. 

But rest assured, whatever happens, The Federation is ready to continue working closely with our provincial government—however that government may look—on the issues that matter most to our members. 

Our provincial election strategy was designed to not only inform and educate the candidates as they campaigned but to also inform and educate the newly-elected government and cabinet ministers. The time and energy that was put into the February Social Policy Forum and the ideas and examples brought forth by members were a big part of this work. With your help, we were able to define and explain the most important issues (across multiple service areas) facing our communities. 

Because of these efforts, and months of diligent work by The Federation team, we are now in a strong position to inform and engage with the BC government that will take shape over the coming weeks. 

Years in the making

The truth is that we have been preparing for this for a long time. Over the past 3 years, we have been meeting with members of the government, the official opposition, cabinet ministers, and deputy ministers. Our “Life in BC” Snapshot reports and the issue briefs from the Social Policy Forum were shared with each major party and their caucuses.

Each year The Federation presents to the Select Standing Committee on Government Services and Finance and each year our Executive Director has follow-up conversations with committee members about the issues that are most important to our members and the need for increased funding. 

As our new provincial government comes into shape over the next few weeks, I feel more confident than ever about The Federation’s position and our ability to speak out (and be listened to) about the things we care about most: sustainable funding, innovation, the meaningful involvement of community organizations in social care planning, a commitment to reconciliation, and improving services to children and youth in care. 

How you can get involved

In the meantime, I encourage you all to get involved as well. The more our government understands and cares about the issues that we care about, the more likely we are to inspire and motivate them to create the kinds of change we want to see.

Our election strategy empowered and encouraged Federation members to get involved as community leaders and to meet with your local candidates. I encourage you all to keep doing this. Use the materials The Federation has made available to help you make the case for BC’s children and families and communities. You never know—your local MLA could very well end up being one of our new cabinet ministers. 

Links to resources, reports, and fact sheets can be found in the sidebar of this email. Use them! You can get additional resources by emailing The Federation’s Research and Policy Analyst Pam Alcorn: pam@fcssbc.ca. If you have any other questions, do not hesitate to contact me